Former SMPD Chief Butts hospitalized in cardiac event

3/11: Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts Jr. is recovering following a "cardiac event" Monday that required emergency surgery and days of hospitalization, according to city officials.

City Manager Artie Fields confirmed the medical emergency Thursday after it was first reported by the blog 2UrbanGirls.

"On March 8, Monday evening at approximately 5:30 p.m., Mayor James T. Butts Jr. experienced a cardiac event while in his office at city hall," Fields said in a statement. "He was transported to UCLA Medical Center by L.A. County paramedics, where he underwent an emergency medical procedure that was successful."

The Westwood hospital released Butts at 3 p.m. Thursday, March 11, according to Fields.

"His condition is good," Fields stated. "The Mayor and council want to thank everyone for their well wishes."

Butts, who rarely misses a City Council meeting, was notably absent at the most recent meeting Tuesday. The council did not address the absence at the time.

The mayor plans to return to work Friday, according to Fields.

Unlike the part-time mayors of other similarly sized cities, Butts is Inglewood's "chief executive officer" under the city's charter and is involved heavily in the city's day-to-day operations. His hands-on management style is often credited with helping the city secure two NFL teams, the Los Angeles Clippers and billions in investments from their owners, though, at times, it has also led to clashes with others, including most recently the city's treasurer.

Butts, the former police chief of Santa Monica, works constantly and estimates he averages about 55 hours per week at Inglewood City Hall, according to past interviews. At the time, he said his typical work day begins at 7:30 a.m. and ends around 6:30 p.m., not including the additional time spent at city events on weeknights and weekends.


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